As planned, today was the last ‘real’ riding day before the Seattle to Portland. I got up early, made some farm fresh scrambled eggs (DAMN they were good) and I was ready to go about 7AM.
It was a bit of a struggle getting outside. I really wanted to just hang around the house. But finally I got my butt in gear and headed out for my 40 mile training route through Everett and Woodinville. Who knew I’d be helping a buncha riders find the right route?
It turns out that today was the Red-Bell 100. A century ride from Redmond to Bellingham. I’ve never done this particular ride, but I have ridden the route once before. I had forgotten, when I selected today’s route, that I would be like a salmon going upstream for part of it. About 1o miles of my route traveled south on their northbound trip.
Once I figured it out though (which was easy when I saw dozens of riders going the other way all sporting numbers) I was pretty excited. I have a buddy Steve riding the route and trying his first century ride. I am sure people were looking at me strangely as I stared at all of them passing looking for him.
More than once I heard “You are going the wrong way!” and at times I was tempted to join in. Today was not a century day however, nor would it have been easy to explain to Michelle I needed a ride home from Bellingham. With this, I just smiled and kept going when I heard people shout.
I’d been passing people for about 3 miles and was starting to think I missed my buddy when all of a sudden there he was. There was this rider sitting perfectly upright, with perfect posture. There was a determined look on his face and eye glasses on his nose. YEP, that was him! “STEVE!!!” I shouted, to hear “Tonyyyyyyyyy!” in response. Both of us kept going. (I will check in on Monday for a recap of the ride.)
A few miles later it was time to pull over and switch gloves. I started with full fingered, and it was warming up nicely. I also wanted to zip off the arms of the shell and make it a vest.
I wasn’t stopped for 2 minutes when a lady going the other way asked “Do you know where I am supposed to go??” (She sounded like a scared little girl!) I pointed down the road and said “Keep going straight till you hit HWY 9.” She looked much relieved! Before I got going again, I told at least 4 more people the same thing.
5 miles later, I was waved down by two more riders asking the same thing. I gave them quick instructions and they headed down the way. I am not sure if the route was poorly marked or if these folks just did not know about Dan Henrys
But it just seemed strange to me to have THAT many people, who were on the correct route be so confused. I let Cascade know, but who knows if next years will be better…
For me the ride was perfect. Long and hilly enough to make it worth riding, but quick enough (just under 3 hours) to not wear me out! The next ride over 20 miles will be the big one of the year.
The rest of the day was fun. Manchild went to his buddy’s house to play video games, and we took off to Woodinville for a wine and cheese tasting! YUM!!! Damn the cheese was good, and the wine wasn’t bad at all.
We hit a coupla other wineries to round out the day. At the last one, this lady kept staring at us. Michelle was getting a bit perturb at here, until she let me know we both worked at the mighty P in the past! It’s a good thing I am good at pretending to remember people! Because seriously, I have no memory of her st all! I didn’t want to hurt her feelings though.
All in all a GREAT day! Tomorrow is yard work, but after today, but that’s ok after today!